online helvetica, capsule sans-serif;">The occupational therapist (OT) is one of the most important support professional for patients with AT. His role is to find ways and techniques to enable people to remain independent as long as possible in the acts of daily life, decease that is to say:
Areas of expertise
Where the role of the physiotherapist is to maintain the tool "human body" operative, the OT will work on its use, especially on:
- Fine motor skills
- The use of the arms and hands aiming at for the necessary stability to use them
- Visual coordination with motion
For this, the OT offers:
- Appropriate objectives and exercises
- To adapt the environment to the person
- Recommendations of equipments
Goals are adapted to the age of the patient with AT:
- Early childhood: explore the world through play and develop coordination
- At school: work on visual and fine motor skills for using tools such as pencils and scissors. Use computer.
- Adolescence and adulthood: enable access to learning and higher education programs and supply the tools for independence
Ataxia telangiectasia and Occupational Therapy
The problems faced by the OT in ataxia telangiectasia are:
- Poor coordination of movements and rebound phenomenon (see "Body control")
- Excessive movement of the head and trunk
- Visual problems (apraxia) that impact the link between sight and fine motor skills (see " Eyes ")
To perform various actions, children with AT develop their own techniques to stabilize and succeed.
While some are naturally interesting and effective, we must be careful that they do not jeopardize their evolution, that is to say that the habit of using a self-taught technique prevents later adaptation to perform more complex things. Others may also cause long-term skeletal deformities (vicious attitudes).
It is the role of the occupational therapist to guide them and teach them the right techniques. For example:
- take support on the elbows to stabilize hands or on the trunk to stabilize arms
- avoid positions where the members are far from the body, which amplifies the difficulty in controlling movements and tremors and therefore reduces accuracy.
There are a wide range of equipment on the market designed to meet the specific needs of people with disabilities in all aspects of their daily lives. But often, some ideas and the talent of a handyman may be sufficient to solve a problem. You will find in the chapter " Daily Life "a range of what, at one time or another, may be helpful to your child. This is clearly the role of the OT to guide you in this choice. Do not hesitate to ask his advice for simple things but also to equip your home, at school or at the place of other activities.